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R&D New chemistry




Research & Development

Internship Compensation

€550 - €600 gross per month

From our awareness about the importance of a responsible leather industry around the world, Smit & Zoon is continuously searching for sustainable solutions for the entire leather value chain. In the leather industry, R&D plays a crucial role in this search through developing chemistry into products suitable for leather processing. At  Royal Smit & Zoon, we believe that we have a social responsibility to offer a good learn & work environment for interns. Furthermore, we target to have internships designed such that these are not only beneficial for the individual trainee, but also for Royal Smit & Zoon.

The R&D department consists of 15 chemists/chemical engineers, and the intern is anticipated to be fulfilling the internship as a member of the research team. Dependent on the research subject, the intern is expected to work either primarily from the R&D laboratory located on the Royal Smit & Zoon production site in Amersfoort, or jointly with the lab at the host institute (HBO/University). Note that: This company location can be reached via public transportation.

Internship assignments:

The R&D department has opportunities for interns to participate in several of the ongoing projects.

In this Internship your assignment would be tailor-made to assess one or more of the following aspects of bio-based chemicals:

  • Develop a new chemical route for novel bio-based leather chemicals;
  • Develop analytical methods to identify and evaluate the performance of new bio-based chemicals;
  • Gather in-depth knowledge on sustainability aspects of bio-based leather chemicals from raw material sustainability “Cradle” to biodegradability of the leather (chemicals) “Grave”.

The chemical industry is experiencing big changes while moving into circular economy by for example replacing petro-based ingredients with bio-based alternatives. Since 2016, Royal Smit & Zoon, a Dutch family business with its core business in providing chemical solutions to the leather industry, has made a lot of progress developing new generation bio-based chemicals for leather making supporting the company’s vision of “creating socially and environmentally friendly leather value chain”. Next to technical feasibility, it is important to develop analytical tools and consistent theories and calculation methods to understand and evaluate sustainability aspects of these new bio-based chemicals. The aim of the internship project is to support Royal Smit & Zoon’s bio-based research direction.


Background intern

  • HBO/University level;
  • Chemistry, preferably Organic or Analytical;
  • Engaged to build knowledge and experience in the chemical industry;
  • Research oriented;
  • With an open mindset and a can-do attitude;
  • Interested in working in an international operating family-owned company;
  • Strong interest in bio-based economy and drive towards sustainability;
  • Good communicator.


What do we offer?

  • Professional supervision providing valuable feedback on your performance;
  • Opportunity to show your technical skills and interests;
  • A competitive compensation during the traineeship;
  • Royal Smit & Zoon, occasionally and based on excellent performance, offers the opportunity to trainees to extend the internship.

About Royal Smit & Zoon

Acknowledged as one of the world’s leading suppliers of chemicals for tanning, wet-end and finishing phases, Royal Smit & Zoon produces sustainable chemical solutions for the leather industry and has, since the start in 1821, grown into a worldwide renowned player. This family owned business provides the leather sector with an ample range of products, all complying with the international regulations and specifications, to be effectively used in different end sectors such as footwear, leather goods, apparel, automotive, and furnishing. The company is fully committed to the promotion and improvement of the whole leather value chain in order to make it better, entirely sustainable, safe, and eco-friendly.

In 2021 King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands granted Smit & Zoon the Royal predicate for our efforts of seven generations of entrepreneurship, innovation and focus on sustainability in the leather value chain.

Royal Smit & Zoon is active in more than 70 countries around the world. In addition to our headquarters in Weesp, we have offices and factories in Amersfoort (the Netherlands), Germany, Italy, India and China. In the Netherlands we have about 150 colleagues, worldwide we work with almost 400 employees.

Our mission is to create a socially and environmentally sustainable leather value chain, together. In other words, to create value for customers and society through product and process innovations, and to make people more aware and familiar with sustainable solutions throughout the leather value chain. With this mission we help society as a whole, by offering leather not only as a sustainable basis for all kinds of beautiful products, but also by taking care of our planet and next generations to come.


More information:
Do you want to jumpstart your analytical chemical career and contribute to the chemical aspiration of Smit & Zoon as an intern?

For more information about this internship or the Smit & Zoon organization, please contact Mark Letter (Corporate Recruiter) at +31 6 28136119 or [email protected]

Introduction of candidates by Recruitment agencies is neither appreciated nor wanted.

Our story

Our mission

Creating a socially and environmentally sustainable leather value chain

Our mission is to create value for customers, shareholders, employees, and society by developing product and process innovations and raising awareness of the need for sustainable solutions in the entire leather value chain. With this mission we help society as a whole, by not only offering leather as a sustainable source for all kinds of products but also by taking care of our planet and of the next generations of people that will be living here.


Have you become enthusiastic?
Send us your resume now and apply immediately.


Do you have any questions or would you like to know more about this position? Contact our Recruiter.
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